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IndyBar: Bench & Bar Gather for 20th Bench Bar Conference

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It’s grown in size from 80 to more than 300, moved to different locations and has evolved into the premier event for education and networking for central Indiana attorneys, but the mission of the Bench Bar Conference has remained the same for the past 20 years—to promote collegiality and build positive relationships among practitioners in the Indy legal community.

On June 13 to June 15, lawyers, judges and even law students gathered once again in Louisville, Ky., for the Bench Bar Conference. From education to networking, the event had it all, serving as a fitting celebration of the event’s 20th anniversary.

To check out even more photos from Bench Bar 2013, visit the IndyBar Facebook page at www.facebook.com/indybar.

iba-bob-annie-15col.jpg The 20th annual Bench Bar Conference was ably chaired by Hon. Bob Altice and Hon. Annie Christ-Garcia, both of the Marion Superior Court.
iba-fed-panel-15col.jpg Hon. Jane Magnus Stinson, U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Indiana; Monica Foster, Executive Director of the Federal Defender Agency; Mark Inman, Attorney at Law and Steve Debrota, United States Attorney’s Office, discuss hot topics in federal law Friday morning.




iba-james-15col.jpgAttendees enjoyed programming in four different tracks—civil and trial skills, criminal law, family law and, for the first time, in-house counsel. James Bell of Bingham Greenebaum Doll LLP is shown here highlighting the potential perils of social media use by attorneys. Programming also included other hot topics like the legalization of medicinal marijuana, workplace violence and cyber threats, and the newly-adopted criminal code.
iba-td-15col.jpgTom Davis, Frost Brown Todd LLC, led attendees down Bench Bar memory lane, recalling some memorable (and some infamous) Bench Bar moments over the past 20 years. TD brought about the first Bench Bar Conference during his IndyBar presidency in 1993.
iba-cocktail-group-15col.jpg Alicia Gooden, The Mediation Group LLC; Natalie Snyder, Cross Pennamped Woolsey & Glazier P.C.; Eric Engebretson, Whitham Hebenstreit & Zubek; Jamy Engebretson and Kathy Harmon, Mallor Grodner LLP enjoy Friday’s cocktail reception.
iba-trivia-2col.jpg Friday was closed out by a sold-out Trivia Night to benefit the Indianapolis Bar Foundation. Perhaps not surprisingly, lawyers and judges brought their competitive spirit, sparring with each other (and sometimes with hosts James Bell and Adam Christensen), but ultimately enjoying a fun evening to benefit a great cause.
iba-lunch-2col.jpg Keynote speaker Craig Zablocki had attendees laughing at Friday’s luncheon, where he urged them to “stop being nouns and start being verbs.”
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  1. Frankly, it is tragic that you are even considering going to an expensive, unaccredited "law school." It is extremely difficult to get a job with a degree from a real school. If you are going to make the investment of time, money, and tears into law school, it should not be to a place that won't actually enable you to practice law when you graduate.

  2. As a lawyer who grew up in Fort Wayne (but went to a real law school), it is not that hard to find a mentor in the legal community without your school's assistance. One does not need to pay tens of thousands of dollars to go to an unaccredited legal diploma mill to get a mentor. Having a mentor means precisely nothing if you cannot get a job upon graduation, and considering that the legal job market is utterly terrible, these students from Indiana Tech are going to be adrift after graduation.

  3. 700,000 to 800,000 Americans are arrested for marijuana possession each year in the US. Do we need a new justice center if we decriminalize marijuana by having the City Council enact a $100 fine for marijuana possession and have the money go towards road repair?

  4. I am sorry to hear this.

  5. I tried a case in Judge Barker's court many years ago and I recall it vividly as a highlight of my career. I don't get in federal court very often but found myself back there again last Summer. We had both aged a bit but I must say she was just as I had remembered her. Authoritative, organized and yes, human ...with a good sense of humor. I also appreciated that even though we were dealing with difficult criminal cases, she treated my clients with dignity and understanding. My clients certainly respected her. Thanks for this nice article. Congratulations to Judge Barker for reaching another milestone in a remarkable career.

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